Western Europe Chapter 11
The countries of Western Europe are united by cultural and political ties. • The region is made up of countries that have democratic governments. • This division dates back to the end of WWII, a war that involved nearly every country of Europe.
Physical Environment • Much of Western Europe is made up of peninsulas. • Scandinavian Peninsula • Jutland Peninsula • Apennine Peninsula • Iberian Peninsula • Balkan Peninsula
Because of all the seas, gulfs, bays, inlets, small fjords and thousands of islands, Europe has more miles of coastline than any other continent. • Europe also has some of the world’s best harbors.
Landforms • Europe’s landforms fall into 4 regions. • the Great European Plain • this region is on the northern coast of the continent. • It runs from the Ural Mountains to France and has very fertile soils. • With large rivers and flat land, this area is the center for transportation and trade.
the Central Uplands • Runs from Spain across the middle of Europe. • Because of the thin, rocky soil this is a poor place for farming. • the Alpine Region • The young and large Alps dominate this region. • There is still a lot of earthquake and volcano activity here. • Despite their size, the Alps are not a major barrier to trade.
the Northwest Mountains • Includes the hills and mountains of France, the British Isles and Scandinavia. • Again, thin poor soils on these slopes makes farming difficult.
Climates and Ecosystems • Even though most of Europe is at the same latitude as most of Canada, their climate is much milder than ours. • The Gulf Stream carries warm water from the Gulf of Mexico across the Atlantic to help keep most of Europe warm. • Winter days are often cloudy, rainy, and humid. Temperatures are rarely very cold.
Southern areas are even warmer and often much drier. • Northern areas are cold and snowy, much like Canada. • Forest use to cover much of Western Europe, but very little is left today, especially in the southern parts. • Large areas were cut for fuel, or to make room for farms, towns and cities. • Europe
Questions From Notes Use an Atlas • What are the 4 major landform regions of Western Europe? Briefly describe each. • Tell why the climate of Europe is warmer than the climate of parts of Canada that lie at the same latitude. • What happened to much of Europe’s forested area? • Name the mountain range in… • Central Italy • Between Spain and France • In Northern Italy • Through what 3 countries in Western Europe does the Arctic Circle pass?
The Human Imprint • Beginning in the 1500’s, European’s revolutionized trade and transportation. • Western European religions, legal and political ideas, scientific discoveries, and arts and literature affected people all over the world.
Population distribution • 380 million people live in Western Europe. • The Netherlands is the most crowded country in Europe with 346 people per square km. • Other heavily populated areas are: • Ruhr Valley • Southern part of British Isles • Parts of Italy • Parts of Spain
Only in parts of Western Europe are there few people. • Iceland • parts of Scandinavia • the Alps, • the highlands of Spain,
Over 75% of Western Europeans live in towns or cities. • Some of the largest with over several million each are… • London, England • Paris, France • Madrid, Spain • Rome, Italy • Athens, Greece • About 50 other cities have a population of over 1 million.
Cultures of Western Europe • Europe has a lot of different cultures because most societies developed apart from each other until the years of trade and exploration. • Language – there are more than 50 languages spoken throughout Europe. Most come from 2 main branches language. • Romance languages (based on Latin) • Most common in the south and west • French, Italian, Portuguese, Spanish • Germanic languages • Most common in the north and the west • English, German, Swedish
Education – Europeans are among the best-educated people in the world. • The literacy rate (number of people able to read and write) in Western Europe is around 95%. • The literacy rate is often lower in the southern parts of Europe as their standard of living is lower and they cannot afford the education that the northern parts can.
Religion – Most Europeans are Christian although there are some other religions with large numbers. • In the southern parts of Western Europe, most are Roman Catholic. • The Pope is the spiritual leader of the Catholic Church. • He governs the church from Vatican City, an independent country located in Rome, Italy.
Most Northern Europeans belong to a different branch of Christianity called Protestant. • Many non-Christians also live in Western Europe. Jews are the largest of these groups, but Hindu and Muslims also have increasing numbers in Western Europe. • In 1933, when Hitler’s Nazi Party took control of Germany, the persecution of Jews sky rocketed. • After the start of World War II, Hitler attempted to wipe out all the Jews in Europe.
Jews in conquered areas of Eastern Europe were killed. • Later, Jews from all over Europe were gathered up and sent to death camps. • By 1945, the Nazis had killed about six million Jews. • These events are known as the Holocaust. • Band of Brothers
Political Patterns • After the fall of the Nazis and their allies in 1945, all countries in Western Europe have democratic governments. • Because most governments here provide so many free service to help their citizens (health care, old age pensions, etc…), they are sometimes called welfare states. • Most Western European countries are members of NATO (North Atlantic Treaty Organization) which helps guard against enemy action from other countries. • Some countries are neutral, which means they don’t take part in international conflict.
Forms of Government Nicolas Sarkozy, President of France • In a few countries of Western Europe, like France, voters elect members of a legislature and a president. • Most countries elect members of a parliament and the majority in parliament then choose one of its members as Prime Minister. David Cameron, Prime Minister of Great Britain (coalition government)
Queen of England • Unlike Canada and the United States, European countries usually have a number of parties running for power. • Ten countries are constitutional monarchies which means they have a king or queen as the head of state, but they don’t have any real power. The power belongs to the government. King of Sweden
Economic Patterns Resources • Western Europe was home to the Industrial Revolution. Today, many European countries are among the top manufacturing countries of the world. • The region has important deposits of natural gas, iron ore, coal and bauxite. • Recent finds of oil in the North Sea have made Europe less dependent on oil imports than in the past.
Agriculture • In Western Europe, farmers produce 2 or 3 times as much food per acre as farmers in the US. They have to because of the limited space. • In Northern Europe farmers grow potatoes, rye, wheat, oats. • In the France, Germany and Southern Europe they grow grapes for wine.
Transportation • Ocean shipping and airlines link Europe with most of the world’s countries. • Almost all of Western Europe is serviced by highways, railroads, rivers and canals, and pipelines. • The railroads are especially fast and easy to use. • test train
Questions Define From Notes • Holocaust • Welfare State Use an Atlas • Name the sea… • Between Iceland and Norway • Between England and Norway • East of Greece • South of Europe • Describe settlement patterns in Western Europe. • What are some of the cultural divisions here? • What forms of government are most common here? • What are Western Europe’s main economic activities?